Lyssomanes viridis, known to those of us who do not speak dead languages as the magnolia green jumping spider, is a lovely translucent green spider that wouldn’t hurt a fly um, is harmless to anything larger than a honyebee and is undeserving of any arachnophobic reactions. Until you get close. Really, really close.
A few years back when I was still following the Bad Astronomy blog, Phil Plait posted an image of odd geological features on Mars, along with the current speculations as to how they had occurred – which were not quite fitting the visible details. Definitely read the post for the salient bits, [...]
This past Tuesday I met with a student down by the river, and afterward poked around to see what items of interest could be found. In the distance I espied a great blue heron (Ardea herodias) that appeared to be hunting, but a closer look revealed that it had been successful. I hadn’t brought [...]
Twenty-three years ago today, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched into low-earth orbit (meaning about 555 km, or 345 mi, above the surface of the Earth.) Since that time, it has produced perhaps the largest body of work of any single telescope, and certainly some of the most detailed. And just recently, NASA released [...]
I’m really not one for quoting others. It’s easy enough to find anyone who has the same point of view that you do, and hold them up as an example of someone famous or prestigious that ‘proves your point.’ This is perhaps doing a disservice to the other reasons to quote someone, such as [...]
A few years ago, a friend of mine told me about his young son, then three years old. It turns out the sprog was not only playing games on his folks’ computer, he had figured out how to install new ones on his own. This was not a child prodigy, and he wasn’t reading [...]
I have been watching the development of the local praying mantises with interest, but this variety of ‘mantis’ is something else entirely. While at least one variety of these could supposedly be found in Florida when I was there, I never did locate one, which is perhaps for the better. But this means I [...]
So yeah, I’m well outside of the range of the annular eclipse, still taking place as I type this I believe, and my friend in Kansas thought he was too. But at least he was watching carefully at sunset when he got the right conditions.
No filters needed when it’s this low on [...]
Okay, first off, I apologize to those whose attention span will not be able to handle a 45 minute video – I know, this is the internet, the TL;DR Channel, where three minutes is a chore. Chill out, get a Pepsi or some tea, and stay on the same page for a bit (it’ll [...]
There are actually two themes I’m continuing here. The first is the limits of our knowledge, which is a “half-empty” perspective; there’s a better way of expressing it, which we’ll get to in a moment. The second theme being continued here is special efforts made by scientists to communicate their work to the general [...]